We store cookies on your device to make sure we give you the best experience on this website. I'm fine with this - Turn cookies off
Switch to an accessible version of this website which is easier to read. (requires cookies)

Last chance to help axe the VAT for mountain rescue teams

April 16, 2014 12:19 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrat MEP George Lyon today encouraged Scots toGeorge Lyon MEPGeorge Lyon MEP join a campaign calling on the EU to change tax rules and allow mountain and lowland rescue services to be made exempt from VAT.

Commenting as an EU consultation on public interest exemptions from VAT entered its final few days, Mr Lyon said that changing tax regulations for mountain and lowland rescue teams would give these key services a real boost.

Mr Lyon and fellow Liberal Democrat MEP Chris Davies met with EU Tax Commissioner Algirdas Šemet earlier this year to discuss this issue.

Backing the campaign, Jonathon Hart, Chair of the Mountain Rescue Committee of Scotland, said that axing VAT would have real financial benefits for mountain rescue teams.

George Lyon MEP said:

"In 2011 alone a total of 573 incidents were responded to by Scottish mountain rescue teams, and these numbers are increasing every year. Mountain and lowland rescue teams are effectively front line emergency services in many parts of Scotland.

"These volunteers put their lives on the line and deserve our full support. We know that cutting VAT for mountain and lowland rescue teams would make a real financial difference and I hope as many Scots as possible will back our campaign.

"The consultation in Brussels is closing soon and this is our last chance to make the case for a change to the rules at the EU. it is important that we send a strong message that axing the VAT is the right thing to do."

Jonathan Hart, Chair of the Mountain Rescue Committee of Scotland, added:

"Mountain Rescue in Scotland is carried out by world class volunteers delivering a service free of charge to people in need of aid in the mountains of Scotland. The majority of our funding comes from private donation and we do receive money from both the UK and Scottish Governments.

"We are not a political organisation and support any move toward reducing costs or increasing income for Scottish Mountain Rescue Teams. In the case of VAT we would like to thank all the MPs and MEPs who are involved in the campaign which if successful would undoubtedly benefit volunteer teams financially."

People wishing to join the campaign can sign up here.